May 15, 2008
TUCSON, Ariz. - University of Arizona men's basketball coach Lute Olson today announced the hiring of Mike Dunlap as associate head coach.
Dunlap, 50, joins the NCAA Division I ranks after spending the last two seasons as an assistant coach with the National Basketball Association's Denver Nuggets. While working under head coach George Karl, the Nuggets compiled a 95-69 (.579) record and made two playoff appearances. The 2007-08 club won 50 games, a first for the organization in 23 seasons.
"I'm very excited to be a part of the University of Arizona and to help Coach Olson further the rich tradition of Arizona basketball," said Dunlap. "My family and I look forward to being a part of this program and to the Tucson community."
Prior to joining the Nuggets, Dunlap, a two-time National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Coach of the Year and winner of two national championships, was the head coach at Metropolitan State College, for nine seasons. In his nine years at the Denver, Colo., school, Dunlap posted a 248-50 (.832) record.
During his tenure, Dunlap built the Roadrunners into a nationally prominent program. With national championships in 1999-2000 and 2001-02 and nine consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament, Dunlap quickly became Metro State's all-time winningest basketball coach.
In May 2006, he was a court coach for the Under-18 National Team trials for USA Basketball. He also was a court coach at the 2005 USA Men's Under-22 National Team trials.
In 2003-04, Dunlap led Metro State to a school-record 30 consecutive victories, including a perfect 19-0 mark in Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) play. It was the first time an RMAC team went undefeated in league play since Fort Hays State did it in 1995-96. The Roadrunners led the nation in margin of victory (28.1 points) and were third in scoring offense (93.4 ppg).
Metro State won its second national championship in 2001-02, defeating Kentucky Wesleyan, 80-72. Dunlap was named the NABC and the Bulletin Division II Coach of the Year. The squad posted a 29-6 record and finished second in the RMAC, but after a loss in the RMAC Tournament, the Roadrunners won six straight games to win the national title.
Dunlap's first national championship came in 1999-2000, also a win over Kentucky Wesleyan, 97-79. The Roadrunners tied for the RMAC regular-season championship, won the RMAC Tournament title and went 33-4 after winning their final 12 contests. The 33 wins is a school record and Dunlap was honored as the NABC National Coach of the Year and the RMAC Coach of the Year.
"We're glad that Mike chose to join our staff," said Olson. "We feel very fortunate to add a coach to our staff that has his experience and ability. He's a great coach and an even better family man and I'm looking forward to working with him."
Prior to his tenure at Metro State, Dunlap served three seasons as the head coach of the Adelaide 36ers, a professional team in Australia. The 36ers posted a 59-33 (.641) record during his tenure and advanced to the National Basketball League Final Four in 1995 and 1996.
Before arriving in Australia, Dunlap served five years as head coach at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, Calif. He led his 1992, 1993 and 1994 teams to Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) titles and appearances in the NCAA Division III National Championship. The Kingsmen also advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 1992 and 1994. The Kodak District Coach of the Year in 1994, Dunlap was 80-54 (.597) in his five seasons, and his 1993-94 team was ranked No. 1 for two weeks during the season.
Dunlap also served as an assistant coach at the University of Southern California under George Raveling, as an assistant coach at the University of Iowa and he spent five years at Loyola Marymount University.
Dunlap, who prides himself in teaching the game of basketball, has had several articles published nationally, including Shooting: The Simple Approach (1990), The Free Throw (1990), Let Your Feet Do the Talking (1989), Motion Offense (1987) and Basic Framework for Achieving Academic Eligibility for Your Players (1987).
A native of Fairbanks, Alaska, Dunlap earned as associate of arts degree in science from Pierce College in 1978, before earning a bachelor's degree in English from Loyola Marymount University in 1980. An avid runner, Dunlap has a 100-mile race to his credit.
Dunlap and his wife, Mollie, have three children, Holt, Spencer and Ellie.